If you're into crime fiction this is simply perfection!
If you saw the dead body of your daughter and a man with a knife standing over her, would you have the strength to not only fight him off - but finish him off too? This is the circumstance that wealthy mother, Abigail Campano finds herself in when she returns early from her tennis club after hearing the humiliating story of her husband being seen with another - younger - woman.
The scene seems to speak for itself, until GBI (Georgia Bureau of Investigation) agent, Will Trent, shows up at sprawling mansion in the well-to-do area of Atlanta and knocks everyone for six when he realises that it's not just a murder scene - but an abduction scene too. One girl is dead - the other is now missing and time is running out for the dyslexic agent to find her.
Told with astonishing ferver and credibility; Slaughter treats us to a masterclass in criminal fiction. Not only is Trent a wonderfully complex human being, but his complexities make him so forthright and honest in his exchanges that it is wonderful to see how newbie Faith Mitchell (a female cop assigned to help Will out) deals with him. There are touching scenes where we see the very innards of Will's soul - his deepest desires and greatest fears - and you feel yourself getting caught up in the emotion that is so heartachingly displayed.
If criminal fiction can ever be described as beautiful, then this is it. Amidst all the horrors both unspoken and shared, there is a beautiful man who doesn't realise his own talents and strengths, or his ability to connect with people in his own unfathomable way. Slaughter makes you hope that there are lots of real Will Trent's out there - fighting the good fight and never giving up on lost souls.
We interview C J Daugherty about Night School
- 10 January 2012